Online tool aims to help prevent summer wildfires

By Te Ao - Māori News
Source / Fire & Emergency NZ checkitsalright.nz website

A new online tool makes it easier to check the fire risk and find out whether a permit is needed to light a fire during summer.

Fire and Emergency NZ wants fire risks to be front of mind for everyone thinking of lighting fires or undertaking spark generating activities this summer. Before lighting any kind of fire, they are asking people to check the local fire danger at www.checkitsalright.nz.

“New Zealanders can check local fire danger and fire season status, and get clear guidance on whether they need a permit to light a fire or not," Internal Affairs Minister Jan Tinetti, who is in charge of Fire and Emergency, said in a statement.

"What will you be doing?" Visitors to the website choose the main activity and then select where.  checkitsalright.nz website / Fire & Emergency NZ

The new mobile-friendly tool on Fire and Emergency’s checkitsalright.nz website makes it easier for people to understand fire danger conditions across the country and make decisions about lighting outdoor fires this summer.

"As we enter a hot, dry summer, it is important people understand the risks and act accordingly. This year, the wildfire season has started earlier. We’ve already had two significant fires, with 3500 hectares devastated at Aoraki/Mt Cook - and 5000 hectares with 48 buildings, melted water tanks, and destroyed power and water systems at Lake Ōhau.

“In New Zealand, 99% of wildfires are started by people – it only takes a spark. Our actions make all the difference, especially when the fire danger is heightened over summer,” Tinetti says.